According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 2.5 million jobs were gained in the month of May, bringing the unemployment rate down to a (still staggering) 16.5%, compared to nearly 20% in April. Many of these jobs were found in just five sectors.
Here is a breakdown of those five, many of which seem to be bouncing back the most as COVID restrictions ease and markets appear less reactive.
BLS reports that the leisure and hospitality sector netted 1.2 million added jobs in May — "by far the largest one-month increase in the sector’s history," according to CNBC. Many of these jobs were in the food service industry, although casinos and amusement parks also added 26,000 jobs.
With projects starting up again in most states, the construction sector added a net 464,000 jobs.
Health care lost 2.2 million jobs in March and April but is beginning to bounce back. It added 390,000 jobs in May.
While many people in the retail sector are still out of work, retail did add 367,000 jobs, chipping away at the heavy layoffs done in March and April.
Manufacturing added over 225,000 jobs in the month of May, a large gain for the sector as it experiences reopening in many states.
It's worth noting that financial activities and wholesale trade also saw job growth, adding 33,000 jobs and 21,400 jobs respectively. Any of these industries may be strong contenders for the focus of your job search. Several job experts who spoke to Fairygodboss advocated for applying in sectors that appear to be experiencing growth by focusing on your transferrable skills and how your interests can fit into those career opportunities. You can read more of their advice here.
However, it's equally important to know where not to look. Several continued to shed jobs in May, with the sectors that have lost the most jobs listed below:
A whopping 585,000 government jobs were lost in May, continuing a negative trend for state and local government employees.
The information sector lost about 38,000 jobs in May.
Mining and logging lost another 20,000 jobs in the month of May.
Transportation and warehousing lost a net 19,000 jobs in May — a continuation of major job losses in the airline, trucking and logistics industries.
About 2,300 utilities jobs were lost in May, a slight net loss.
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